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Frank's Movie Log

My life at the movies.

  1. A still from Kvinnors väntan (1952)

    Kvinnors väntan 1952

    C-: 3 stars (out of 5)

    Directed by Ingmar Bergman. Starring Anita Björk, Eva Dahlbeck, Maj-Britt Nilsson, and Birger Malmsten.

    A portmanteau comprising the stories of three married women awaiting their husbands at a summer cottage.

    The vignettes play out with confidence and ring true, but lack resonance. Honest performances all around, but the women’s deepest secrets all revolve around disappointments in their respective husbands. Shocking for a 1950s audience, but trite today.

    Watched on 01 Apr, 2021
  2. A still from Hi, Mom! (1970)

    Hi, Mom! 1970

    D+: 2 stars (out of 5)

    Directed by Brian De Palma. Starring Robert De Niro, Allen Garfield, Lara Parker, and Charles Durning.

    A sequel to Greetings that sees Robert De Niro reprising his role as Jon Rubin, now a Vietnam War vet returned home to New York City. Continue reading...

    Watched on 31 Mar, 2021
  3. A still from 71 Fragments of a Chronology of Chance (1994)

    71 Fragments of a Chronology of Chance 1994

    C+: 3 stars (out of 5)

    Directed by Michael Haneke. Starring Gabriel Cosmin Urdes, Lukas Miko, Otto Grünmandl, and Anne Bennent.

    I appreciated director Michael Haneke’s willingness to experiment with his third feature, but the result underwhelmed. I’m not sure why. Continue reading...

    Watched on 29 Mar, 2021
  4. A still from Drácula (1931)

    Drácula 1931

    C+: 3 stars (out of 5)

    Directed by George Melford. Starring Carlos Villarías, Lupita Tovar, Barry Norton, and Pablo Álvarez Rubio.

    A Spanish-language production shot on the same sets as the more famous version. The English production worked days, the Spanish production nights. Some critics consider the Spanish version superior. I disagree. Continue reading...

    Watched on 28 Mar, 2021
  5. A still from In the Wake of the Bounty (1933)

    In the Wake of the Bounty 1933

    F: 1 star (out of 5)

    Directed by Charles Chauvel. Starring Arthur Greenaway, Mayne Lynton, Errol Flynn, Victor Gouriet, John Warwick, and Patricia Penman.

    Errol Flynn’s debut. Barely a narrative feature versus a travelog covering Pitcairn, a south seas island settled by survivors of the HMS Bounty. The film opens with a pub patron recounting the tale of the Bounty mutiny. Flynn plays Fletcher Christian in these flashbacks. He’s stiff and awkward, standing ramrod straight and mistaking volume for emotion as he recites his lines without the faintest trace of charisma. Flynn’s performance amounts to maybe ten minutes of footage, with the film devoting much of the flashback to shots of topless Tahitian women sliding into pools of water.

    Watched on 28 Mar, 2021
  6. A still from Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice (2016)

    Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice 2016

    B-: 4 stars (out of 5)

    Directed by Zack Snyder. Starring Ben Affleck, Henry Cavill, Amy Adams, and Jesse Eisenberg.

    While still frustrating, the Ultimate Edition proffers a more coherent film. Continue reading...

    Watched on 27 Mar, 2021
  7. A still from Assault on Precinct 13 (1976)

    Assault on Precinct 13 1976

    A-: 5 stars (out of 5)

    Directed by John Carpenter. Starring Austin Stoker, Darwin Joston, Laurie Zimmer, and Martin West.

    John Carpenter’s second feature. A terrific action thriller set in a desolate police precinct pitting Howard Hawks archetypes against a gangland siege. Continue reading...

    Watched on 27 Mar, 2021
  8. A still from This Is the Night (1932)

    This Is the Night 1932

    C: 3 stars (out of 5)

    Directed by Frank Tuttle. Starring Roland Young, Thelma Todd, Cary Grant, and Lili Damita.

    Cary Grant’s debut. He strides onto the screen flashing the suave, charming, confident, continental personality that defined his career. He outshines everyone on screen and even towers over them physically. Continue reading...

    Watched on 27 Mar, 2021
  9. A still from Service de Luxe (1938)

    Service de Luxe 1938

    C-: 3 stars (out of 5)

    Directed by Rowland V. Lee. Starring Constance Bennett, Vincent Price, Charles Ruggles, and Helen Broderick.

    Vincent Price’s debut. He plays a henpecked inventor hoping to sell his plan for a new tractor. Constance Bennett plays the owner of a company of female concierges who manage wealthy men’s lives. She longs for an independent man. He longs for a submissive woman. You can see where it’s going. Continue reading...

    Watched on 27 Mar, 2021
  10. A still from White Fang (1973)

    White Fang 1973

    D+: 2 stars (out of 5)

    Directed by Lucio Fulci. Starring Franco Nero, Virna Lisi, Fernando Rey, and John Steiner.

    Opens strong, with great location photography featuring a pair of wolves running through a snowy forest. Then a jarring cut to an obvious soundstage resets our expectations. Continue reading...

    Watched on 26 Mar, 2021


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